A textile designer designs and usually produces textiles and fabrics. Textile design crosses an unusual line between technical industry and the creative professions. Designers conceive and create the fabrics used in fashion and interiors, which are then incorporated into products – everything from dresses to cushion-covers.
Textile designers are creative but also technically skilled, and they are often knowledgeable about the whole process of product design, production, sale and use. Textile designers can work individually or as a part of a design team.
As a creative job, the hours can be unorthodox, and many textile designers run their own freelance business.
A textile designer require the following skills:
• Technical skills – these are too various to list, but can involve use of artist’s tools or industrial machinery, as well as the ability to draw, print and paint
• Creative skills – an ability to find and identify inspiration, and a desire to pursue a creative career
• Ability to work alone or with groups of designers when creating a product of which the textile is just one aspect
Although qualifications and prior positions held are rarely requisite elements of textile design positions, all textiles designers must have the technical and creative abilities necessary to have worked up a significant portfolio if they want to get hired.
Progression really depends on individual desire: while some textile designers want nothing more than to design and make their own textiles in their own business, others are hoping to secure a permanent salaried position on creative or technical teams at a big company. Yet others will incorporate textile design into other jobs that can range widely, from art teaching to product promotion.
To do this role, you will need to: